The Gordon College Archives operates under Jenks Library at Gordon College as the official repository of Gordon College and Barrington College records. The Archives collects both official college records and unofficial documentation of campus life, including:
Official college records include materials directly generated by the College and its employees. Official records are collected in order to document administrative operations, curricular development and growth, campus events, and development of the College's various departments. These records include:
In addition to official records, the Archives actively collects materials that document the broader life, scholarship, and culture of Gordon College and related individuals and organizations. As well as records and memorabilia of student organizations, dorm life, sports, and other activities. Papers of alumni, faculty, administrators, and trustees are collected, particularly those that document the individuals' time on the Gordon campus or that build upon existing strengths of the collection. It is at the discretion of the College Archivist to determine the collection of personal papers and manuscripts on a case by case basis. Additionally, the Archives seeks to collect publications of the entire Gordon community, including faculty, alumni, administrators, and trustees. The Archives actively encourages donations of such publications. Note that collections that include especially large physical objects may be out of the scope of the Archives.
The Archives primary purpose is to document and preserve the history and mission of Gordon College and Barrington College. As such, other collections included as part of the Archives are identified as supporting the College's mission. To supplement the official records of the College and related people and organizations three collections, mainly books and some periodicals, are housed in the Archives.
Books relating to the history of the College or by persons related to the College are shelved together in the Archives book collection. Items of singular interest that support the mission and the coursework of the College are shelved in the Special Collections book collection. Items relating to the Temperance Movement, in which Maria Hale Gordon was a leader, are shelved in the Temperance collection. While materials are occasionally added to these collections, the Archives is not actively seeking new additions.
The family of Edward Payson Vining donated his personal, rare book collection to the College in 1921 and it is currently housed in the Archives. The collection consists of over 7,000 books, manuscripts, and letters, ranging from the 12th century to the early 20th century. It contains over 900 Bibles in 140 languages and is rich in Shakespeareana, Early Americana, geography, travel literature, ethnology, and philology – with vast holdings in indigenous languages. As it is a closed collection, no items are added to it.
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